Beijing Olympics Ratings Gold for NBCFirst four nights of 2008 Beijing Olympic Games average 30.4 million viewers with 17.1 rating/30 share. 8/12/2008 11:12:00 AM Eastern
The first four nights of the 2008 Beijing Olympic Games averaged 30.4 million viewers with a 17.1 rating/30 share, a 16% bump over the first four nights from Athens four years ago.
Through four days, NBC said it has collected 157 million total viewers, up 15 million from Athens.
NBC was helped by swimmer Michael Phelps, whose quest for the most Olympic gold medals ever and most gold medals in a single Olympics is being chronicled live in primetime by the network.
Sunday night’s men’s 4x100 meter relay, featuring Phelps, and Bob Costas’ interview with President Bush, drew a 21 rating/32 share and 38.4 million viewers in the 9:30 p.m. half-hour.
Monday night, which saw Phelps collect his third gold medal, peaked with a 20.1 rating/31 share and 34.4 million viewers in its 10 p.m. half-hour.
NBC hopes Phelps keeps up his chase for history with an additional two gold-medal races scheduled for Tuesday night: the 200-meter butterfly and the 4x200 freestyle relay, both of which will air live. One more gold medal and Phelps would have more career golds than any Olympian in history.
The ratings bump hasn’t been restricted to the television, either: NBCOlympics.com has delivered 13.5 million video streams in Beijing so far, compared with 2.2 million for the entire Athens Games.